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Topic: chemo after a mastectomy

Forum: ILC (Invasive Lobular Carcinoma) — Just diagnosed, in treatment, or finished treatment for ILC.

Posted on: Aug 5, 2007 06:09PM

neeliecar wrote:

I have been diagnosed with Invasive Lobular Carcinoma. First they told me it was about 8mm and now after the MRI, they say it is about 2 cm (but they probably is with swelling from biopsy, but biopsy was 2 weeks before MRI). I was told if mass is over 1 cm, that I would need to do chemo, I really don't want to do that, so I am leaning towards the mastectomy, but I am reading that many women have to do chemo anyway after a mastechomy. Is that really the case. My surgeon thinks I should do the lumpectomy to see the actual size and stage and then make a decision regarding mastectomy. I am 54 with breast cancer on both sides of the family and I know that I will wake up every day wondering when it will come back as it has on my father's side. Most people feel my decision to have mastectomy will be better for me as I have a very busy life and want to get back to it as soon as possible. I really don't want to do chemo. Can someone let me know whether chemo is necessary with mastectomy? The more I read and see, the more confused I am. I am ER, PR + and HERS negative and at this point in time no lymph node invasion. Grade 2.Neeliecar

Eileen (neeliecar) - Don't plan for tomorrow, live for today! Dx 7/20/2007, ILC, 1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 2, 0/12 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Aug 5, 2007 06:30PM MargaretB wrote:

Hi Neeliecar, I was diagnosed in my right breast at age 49. I chose a bilateral for several reasons: family history (mom and sister), symmetry, and I didn't want to have to wait for the other shoe to drop. When the tumor board told me they saw calcifications on the left side, that cemented my decision to have the bilateral. Both my BS and PS said no chemo, however, the onc. disagreed. I had a second opinion and he agreed with the onc. The chemo is for any stray cancel cells. I had a teeny bit of lymph node activity so I did chemo. It's your best chance of hitting it hard the first time. I also didn't want to deal with "should have, could have" if it came back. You have to feel comfortable with your decision. Chemo is not fun but it is doable.

Good luck.


Dx 12/23/04, Bilateral w/tram 3/10/05, DD chemo 5/12/05, finished 6/26/05
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Aug 5, 2007 06:47PM karen1956 wrote:

Neeliecar - I had a bilat at the recommendation of both surgeons I interviewed. Right breast and lymph were full of cancer. Turned out left breast was pre-cancerous. I knew prior to surgery that chemo was in the cards for me. Turned out I also needed rads. I was stage 2 prior to surgery and then after surgery told stage 3. If you have questions, maybe get a second opinion. As MArgaret said, you need to feel good about your decision. And chemo is HARD, but it is doable. all the best to you.

Karen in Denver, Dx 02/03/2006, ILC, stage IIIa, ER/PR+, HER2-,
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Aug 6, 2007 07:23AM gracejon wrote:

My response in on your "Just Diagnosed" thread question. Good Luck with everything!

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Aug 6, 2007 08:13AM marshakb wrote:


It depends on size and nodal status. I had a mast but still had to do chemo and rads because th tumor was 5.2 and I had one micro node. Good Luck with your decision, let us know if we can help in any way. Hugs, Marsha
I'm not dead yet! Dx ILC, Stage IV, 1/13 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Aug 6, 2007 11:34AM Lynn12 wrote:


As others have said, getting chemo depends on the size of the tumor and node status. I don't think it matters if you get mastectomy or lumpectomy on whether you get chemo, radiation would depend on which surgery (radiation w/ lumpectomy, not with most cases). I, like Marsha had mastectomy, chemo and radiation because of size of tumor (7.5cm). Chemo is given to kill any cancer cells that might have left the breast and are hanging out in other parts of your body. Chemo is not fun, but doable.

Best of luck in your decision!

Lynn Dx 11/7/2006, ILC, 6cm+, Stage IIB, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-

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